The Top 10 Best Opening Lines in Fantasy Fiction

The Top 10 Best Opening Lines in Fantasy Fiction

By Stephanie M. Bucklin

Fantasy Fiction Best Opening Lines

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Maybe you can’t judge a book by its cover, but what about its first lines? From classics to modern fantasies, we chose ten of our favorite opening lines in the fantasy genre, from the evocative to the downright silly.

Did we miss one of your favorites? Leave us a note in the comments below.

1. Gideon, Alex Gordon
“The day the men of Gideon burned Nicholas Blaine dawned warm.”

2. The Stolen Child, Keith Donohue
“Don’t call me a fairy. We don’t like to be called fairies anymore.”

3. The Graveyard Book , Neil Gaiman
“There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.”

4. Ship of Magic , Robin Hobb
“Maulkin abruptly heaved himself out of his wallow with a wild thrash that left the atmosphere hanging thick with particles. Shreds of his skin floated with the sand and muck like the dangling remnants of dreams when one awakes. He moved his long sinuous body through a lazy loop, rubbing against himself to rub off the last scraps of outgrown hide. As the bottom muck started to once more settle, he gazed about at the two dozen other serpents who lay basking in the pleasantly scratchy sediments. He shook his great maned head and then stretched the vast muscle of his length. ‘Time,’ he bugled in his deep-throated voice. ‘The time has come.’”

5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling
“Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you’d expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn’t hold with such nonsense.”

6. The Fifth Season , N.K. Jemisin
“Let’s start with the end of the world, why don’t we?”

7. The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”

8. The Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern
“The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it, no paper notices on downtown posts and billboards, no mentions or advertisements in local newspapers. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.”

9. Mistborn: The Final Empire, Brandon Sanderson
“Sometimes, I worry that I’m not the hero everyone thinks I am.”

10. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Susanna Clarke
“Some years ago there was in the city of York a society of magicians. They met upon the third Wednesday of every month and read each other long, dull papers upon the history of English magic.”

By Stephanie M. Bucklin

Are We Missing Your Favorite Opening Line?
Let Us Know In The Comment Section Below!

 

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Summary
The Top 10 Best Opening Lines in Fantasy Fiction.
Article Name
The Top 10 Best Opening Lines in Fantasy Fiction.
Description
Maybe you can’t judge a book by its cover, but what about its first lines? From classics to modern fantasies, we chose ten of our favorite opening lines in the fantasy genre, from the evocative to the downright silly.
Author
BuzzyMag.com
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Stephanie Bucklin
Stephanie M. Bucklin is a freelance writer that has written for outlets including NY Mag, Astronomy.com, and Live Science. She also writes fiction under a pen name for middle-grade readers (JACK DEATH, Creston Books 2016).
Stephanie Bucklin
  • My personal favorite is the opening of Blood Rites (Book 6 of The Dresden Files) by Jim Butcher-The building was on fire, and it wasn’t my fault.’

    • David Piwinski

      That’s a great one!

      • SHERRYE NICHOLS

        My favorite!

  • David Piwinski

    “The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.”

    • Charke

      Yes. Right? What the HECK are they thinking…..

    • Chris Gonnerman

      Hands down, best ever.

  • Tyler

    “On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jackass of a boss from a fourteenth-story window.” Monster Hunter International- Larry Correia

  • AJ

    Blake Charleton, whom I otherwise don’t care for, has some amazing first lines.

    “The grammarian was choking on her own words.”

  • Charlie Hoke

    The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.

  • Lee Kanoa Enos

    One of my all time faves is the opening lines of Dan Simmons, Song of Kali.

  • Dan O’Driscoll

    “There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, The Voyage of the “Dawn Treader”

  • William Glass

    “‘Whose spells are you using, Buddy?'” and “‘Is it blood, doctor?”‘, both from Robert A. Heinlein novellas from UNKNOWN WORLDS, “Magic, Inc” (1940) and “The Unpleasant Profession of Johnathan Hoag” (1942).

  • Desiree Mulford

    It was a dark and stormy night.